I want to buy the lens

  • Voigtlander Nokton 40mm F1.4, $449
  • Voigtlander Nokton 35mm F1.4, $629

I am asking, why the slightly difference in focal length, the price difference in so much as $180? Shouldn't just be a few steps difference when you take a photo in practice for 35mm vs 40mm?

Related: https://www.flickr.com/groups/voigtlander/discuss/72157603999227582/

4 Answers 4


You're right that the focal lengths aren't that different. Considering that alone, I wouldn't worry about it, unless you have a particular need. (35mm is a little nicer close quarters, but not by much.)

But note that that's not the only difference — the lenses have different optical construction, with the 35mm having an additional element. They do seem pretty similar, though, and that doesn't completely explain the difference in price.

  • what do you mean by close quarters ? Didn't hear that before. May 31, 2014 at 9:07
  • @user2664856 Indoors, you may not have the option to back up a few feet.
    – mattdm
    May 31, 2014 at 11:58

Disregarding any other difference between lenses, I would personally pay an extra $180 for the 35mm lens. Why? A 35mm lens is a magic angle to me -- it's how I see.

When I started with DSLRs and a crop-sensor body I figured I could use my 28-105mm lens on the camera; it's focal length would be 42-152mm, or thereabouts. I also had a 20mm lens, so that would become 30mm on the new DSLR, and I thought that those two would work well for me. The trouble is, the zoom was always too long. The prime was always too short. Arguably, it was not a big deal because I just had to take a few steps forward or backward most of the time, however I found myself needing to do this all the time. It drove me nuts! I eventually got a 24mm prime lenses, which gave me 36mm on the crop-sensor DSLR, and all was right with the world again. Now, on a full frame DSLR, I use a 35mm lens, and that's great, too.

For me, the difference between 35mm and 40mm is significant in how much I can enjoy photography. It's well worth the cost difference to me.

Also, I wouldn't be at all surprised if there are some performance differences to those lenses that make the 35 command a higher price, as detailed in the Flickr discussion you linked to.


If you're looking at the M-mount lenses, a Leica M camera will have 35mm frame lines, but no 40mm frame lines. Something like the Leica CL or (i think) some of the Voigtlander Bessa cameras have 40mm lines, but no 35mm lines. You'd have to choose the lens appropriate for your camera. M-mount cameras with 35mm lines are more common, which could explain some of the difference in price (simple supply and demand).

Also, I believe the 35mm lens is newer, which could explain some of the difference in cost as well.


Actually, according to Ken Rockwell, the optics in the 40mm Nokton f/1.4 might actually be much better than the optics in the 35mm Nokton f/1.4.

So, while I can not comment on the cause of the price difference between the two lenses, it certainly doesn't seem warranted. According to Ken's review, there is way more barrel distortion in the 35mm lens and it is less sharp.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.